Five most beautiful places to visit in the Algarve
When it comes to underrated European beach destinations, Portugal’s picturesque Algarve is up there with the best one. With an array of picture-perfect beaches, beautiful architecture and endless natural wonders to explore, here, you will find a spectacular coastline boasting pretty marinas backed by quaint and pretty historical villages, and more incredible local food and wine than you can shake a stick at. With over a hundred miles of some of the finest beaches in Europe, breath-taking red cliffs and crystal clear waters, there are few better places to while away a late summer holiday – and with an array of luxurious accommodation options to choose from, you certainly won’t have to compromise on those creature comforts while you’re there.
Aside from opulent boutique hotels and the more traditional bed and breakfast style guest houses for those wanting a more authentic experience, there are plenty of beautiful villas here if you’re looking for privacy and exclusivity. From Vila Moura to Albufeira, Quinta do Lago to Lagoa, you’ll be hard pressed to choose just one place to base yourself for the duration of your stay. But, if your accommodation is well located, then you’ll be perfectly positioned to explore some of the best of the beauty the Algarve has to offer – and believe us, there are many.
To help you start planning for Portuguese getaway, we’ve rounded up five of the most beautiful places to visit in the Algarve.
Praia da Rocha
One of the Algarve’s widest and most picturesque beaches, Praia Da Rocha is an unmissable destination on any trip to this Portuguese paradise. With beautiful golden sand set against a backdrop of low yet imposing cliffs, this beach is reason enough on its own to visit the Algarve – and with crystal clear waters that are just perfect for snorkelling or taking a dip, it’s certainly no mystery as to why. This is a great destination to visit with kids, as there is plenty to do.
Architecture in Tavira
Found at the Easternmost part of the Algarve, Tavira is one of the prettiest towns you’ll find in this utterly alluring part of Portugal, and architecturally speaking, it is second to none. From the historic Roman bridge, which affords sweeping views over the Gilão River, to the traditional white-washed houses that line the streets, Tavira is also home to a whopping 20 churches that are well worth a look. As well as the appeal of the town’s Moorish influence, its beaches are truly something special, with powdery, soft white sand and turquoise waters that are an attractive prospect during the summer months.
Vila Moura Marina
Perhaps the most luxurious resort on the Algarve, Vilamoura is a place that oozes glamour, and offers a unique experience when compared with the rest of the more traditional resorts in the area. The marina here is particularly spectacular, and is a great place to sit, enjoy a drink and watch the boats come in, whether it’s day or night. Whilst relatively peaceful during the day, in the evening, the vibe changes somewhat as the livelier crowds arrive – but it’s all very civilised, nonetheless. In Vilamoura, you will also find some of the best luxury villas in the Algarve – so there are few better places to base yourself during your stay on the Algarve.
Ria Formosa Nature Reserve
A stunning network of canals, islands and marshes, the Ria Formosa Nature Reserve is one of the most beautiful natural attractions on the Algarve, and is constantly changing with the wind, current and tides. Unlike anywhere you will have been before, the coastal lagoon makes for a great spot for a peaceful session kayaking or paddle boarding – and all whilst taking in the nature that surrounds you and spotting a bird or two.
Benagil Caves Near Cavoeiro
One of the most spectacular sights you’ll see in the Algarve, the breath-taking Benagil Caves are a must see, often said to be some of the most incredible caves in the whole of Europe. Located close to both Carvoeiro and Lagos, they are best reached by boat, and you can spend hours exploring up to 20 caves in total. The star of the show, of course, is the Benagil Cave itself, with an open ceiling known as the ‘eye’ allowing the sun’s rays to filter in and illuminate it.